The new Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is to make his debut at Prime Minister’s Questions later, taking on David Cameron for the first time.

Mr Corbyn will rise to ask the first of his six allotted questions shortly after midday, with his performance likely to be closely scrutinised by the media and Labour MPs. He has called for “less theatre and more facts” at the weekly showpiece. He has crowd-sourced question ideas from social media and The Labour Party says it has received more than 30,000 suggestions. As the headline Owen Jones’s article in today’s Guardian says, ‘If Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour is going to work, it has to communicate.’

Good communication is essential if you wish to make a positive impression on others.

Effective communication isn’t just about what you say and write, but it’s about HOW you say and write it!

Here are 5 Top Tips on how to use your verbal and non-verbal communication skills to ensure you make a positive impact. Tips 1-3 focus on WHAT you say, Tips 4-5 look at the WAY you say it:-

1.Be concise

If you’re to get a message across effectively, you must be direct and accurate.

Use short, punchy sentences and try to summarise wherever possible. If people have to identify the important information from a long dialogue, they will eventually give up and your message will be lost.


Work on using clear, concise and constructive language and get your message across effectively.

Choose words you’re comfortable with. It’s important to match your vocabulary to that of the receiver. If you use language they won’t understand such as technical words and jargon, you will only distance yourself from the person with whom you are trying to communicate.

3.Stay on track

During communication, things may happen to knock you off track. PMQs are famous for this! Heckling is par for the course!

For example, someone might disagree with you. In this case, you’ll need some time to reconsider your views and prepare an assertive response. You can gain valuable seconds by using starter words such as “Well…” or “I see…, by asking for clarification or checking your understanding; or asking for time to think about what the other person has said.

4.Confident delivery

Use your voice to full effect. Don’t shout but add quality to your voice.

To do this you can apply a breathing technique used by singers:-

Put your hand on your stomach and breathe deeply so that your hand moves in and out. This is abdominal breathing which allows you to access the lower, richer end of your voice range. If you use abdominal breathing while speaking, you can take in more air and thus talk for longer without pausing.

5.Facial expression

Your facial expression should always be appropriate for the message you’re giving.

For example, a smile can be disarming, but is inappropriate if you are giving bad news.

Good eye contact demonstrates respect and openness. Avoiding eye contact, on the other hand, can suggest nervousness or dishonesty.

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